The keynote Norman Lewis (France Telecom) gave at eTel is definitely worth a read (thanks to ?? for directing me there).
1. Voice has been around for a long time, without innovation. It's about time.
2. He takes the adage "voice = application" one step further. Voice can be embedded in all sorts of apps, just like time is embedded is much more than just watches. FT issues APIs and the web 2.0 movement will supply apps for it to be embedded in.
3. Telco strenght is in customer service and technicians; authentication and identity management; data. Hence they can lead the way.